Turkey arrests Syrian banana eaters

30 Oct

Two days ago in the centrist Middle East observer, Al-Monitor …

As tensions soar between Turks and their country’s 4 million refugees, a viral trend of young Syrians posting videos of themselves eating bananas has ended in some set to be deported.

Nazlan Ertan: October 28, 2021

Turkey said it was deporting at least seven Syrians for participating in a “provocative banana-eating campaign” after a wave of TikTok videos showing young Syrians munching the fruit as a way of mocking anti-refugee sentiment in Turkey and the battered Turkish economy.

The images and videos — posted by Syrians not only in Turkey but also in other countries — came after a Turkish man complained before cameras that he could no longer afford bananas, whereas the Syrians could buy loads. Bananas, which cost $1-2 per kilogram in Turkey, are traditionally seen as a symbol of a lavish lifestyle.

While some Turks reacted to the Syrian videos that have gone viral over the last 10 days, the deportation announcement from Turkey’s Directorate General of Migration Management came as a surprise — and brought questions about whether the deportations, which have not yet taken place, would be legal. 

“I honestly did not see that coming,” Omar Kadkoy, a policy analyst at the Economic Policy Research Foundation of Turkey, told Al-Monitor. “The deportation announcement shows a bankruptcy of policy. Do the Syrians have no right to express their views when they are faced with discrimination or use sarcasm against the anti-refugee myths? What does it say for freedom of expression? Worse, what does it say about social cohesion between the Turkish and Syrian communities, except to say it is on very thin ice?”

A cryptic statement by the directorate said that a probe over the provocative social media posts had led to the arrest of seven foreign nationals who were being deported following the judicial process. The migration authority’s statement did not clarify just what the seven people were charged with, but a statement from the Istanbul police later on Thursday said that 11 Syrians had been taken into custody for “inciting hatred” and “insulting Turkish people.”

Full story here …

5 Replies to “Turkey arrests Syrian banana eaters

  1. “They don’t like it up ’em, Mr Mainwaring!”

    Reminds me of this reaction to the ‘Lets go Brandon’ meme:


    Where even the fact that a song was at number 1 on Itunes was removed from the published list with the chart starting at number two:


    Cancel culture and corporate sponsored, supported and imposed woke imperialism/exceptionalism at its most raw.

    People will be non-personed soon (just like Kathleen Stock at Surrey) just for ‘perceived’ silent insubordination.

      • My last boss was dubbed Pol Pot on account of their enthusiasm for a year zero management approach and style. Even so, things got so bad said manager ended up reverting and going back on the tools. The company ended up selling the unit off to a legal firm not so long back with a promise they could stay working in Sheffield.

        As soon as the deal was done that option was taken off the table. It was work in Leeds or bugger off. Those that could jumped. You live by the sword you die by the sword.

        • Pol Pot – I love its witty use of reality based hyperbole. Mordant wit is one of the few tools available to the disempowered. A governor of a Scottish jail – I think Barlinnie – was known for having two things: a Ph.D and a habit of turning down all and any prisoner requests – e.g. for leave to attend a loved one’s funeral.

          His nickname? Dr No.

          • The other alternative in this instance was apparently Dolores Umbridge. But I’m not going to go down that road right now.

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